Written & Directed by Rob Zombie
Starring: Sid Haig, Sheri Moon Zombie, Bill Moseley, William Forsythe, Leslie Easterbrook, Ken Foree, and Matthew McGrory
The murderous, backwoods Firefly family takes to the road to escape a vengeful police force which isn’t afraid of being as ruthless as their target.
I’m not sure where to start with a film I love so much. I’m a Rob Zombie fan, and with the exception of Halloween II (at least the bulk of it), I’ve enjoyed his works so far. TDR is by far his superior film. This movie encapsulates many brutal qualities into one gruesome film. The opening moments show a sick view of the Firefly Family as they lay asleep with corpses in their beds. Little do they know that Sheriff Wydell (Forsythe) and his team are storming the family home. Only a short time has passed since the end of House of 1000 Corpses, and the family’s time is up. Prepared to meet the Ruggsville Police head on, the family wakes up ready to kill or be killed and quickly dons their custom face and body armor. The ensuing firefight is brutal and leaves several officers dead and wounded. Mama Firefly (Easterbrook) is captured as she’s stays grief-stricken by her fallen son’s life. Now, for the first time, the Firefly’s are on the run.
I love Zombie’s approach to directing and his age reflects the throwback quality of the film. The family flees in slow motion montages that freeze as the actor’s names are shown in the credits. The Allman Brothers’ Midnight Rider’ provides a striking backdrop to the rush to freedom. The family have an ace in the hole to some degree as Tiny is overlooked in the police storm. The opening scene of the movie shows tiny dragging a naked and mutilated corpse through the forest leading to the family home. This won’t be the last time we see him.
The Devil’s Rejects use an odd combination of effective techniques to achieve this masterfully piece of horror art. Spaulding, Otis, Mama, and Baby obviously love each other no matter how sick and murderous they are – an odd characteristic for what the local police called the worst thing since Jack the Ripper. There’s comedy at off moments as well and an overall feeling that screams how much time and effort went into TDR.The long blonde/gray hair and dark beard presents Otis in a terrifying new light. This man is the scariest thing about this film. His dialogue is so well delivered by the brilliant Bill Moseley. I almost have a hard time seeing him as any other character. His dark chemistry with Haig and Zombie gives the movie legs of its own. The Firefly’s are the most perverse and murderous family in 30 years. Rob Zombie was smart and let this franchise die where it did, ending on an explosively superb note. Prequel anyone?
The Devil’s Rejects is in my top five, and for good reason. This movie is a masterful example of how a perverse and violent movie can become a work of art when the right people do it. This Blu Ray will make a great Halloween season addition to your collection.